The Great Southern Route : 2013 - 2014
miles from Mahé, the Seychelles’ principal island. You will discover this is where sailing still means seeing no other sail but your own and where opportunities for diving, fishing and island-hopping abound in places where few have gone before. Stunning atolls, sand cays and reef islands are the order of the day in these remoter southwestern waters of the archipelago, strung like pearls on invisible lines of surf amid an azure ocean. 1/10,000 scale charts of the ocean surrounding the islands have been published as mooring guides and are available on the mainland but captains are reminded that, due to remoteness of the islands and the infrequency of mapping surveys, the depth soundings are often missing or inaccurate. Special care should be taken to sail cautiously over the mooring zones and in waters surrounding the more remote islands and the printed figures should not be trusted blindly as coral bottoms can vary constantly. The skipper should remain alert to the sounder at all times. The Seychelles’ amazing diversity is the result of in comfort, service and amenities conspire with magnificent natural surrounds to offer a supremely tranquil and memorable vacation. The Banyan Tree, St. Anne, Le Méridièn Fisherman’s Cove, Lémuria, La Briz Silhouette and Maia resorts are already in place while new projects for Four Seasons, Shangri-la and Ephelia properties envisaged. Seychelles tourism industry is visibly taking off and the signs are everywhere. Fabulous island refuges such as those on North Island, Frégate, Denis, Round, Alphonse, Desroches and Bird provide everything from the five-star opulence to the homely comforts of picturesque beachside chalets. What is particularly refreshing is that the Seychelles tends to be very unprocessed as a tourism destination and an authentic island lifestyle is everywhere; in the architecture, customs, cuisine, music as well as in the genuinely laid-back pace of life. The Coralline or Outer Islands lie in a spectacular, gleaming arc that stretches towards the east coast of Africa, ranging between 120 and 700 nautical GENERALLY SpEAkING, the cusps of the trade winds produce fairly wind-free conditions throughout April and again in October. Tides are semi-diurnal and asymmetrical with a gap of nearly six hours between high and low tide. The tidal range is as high as two metres at spring tide and as low as 0.9 metres at neap tide. You will the Seychelles subject to only mild currents averaging 1.5 knots that develop in line with the trade winds and producing a swell that is generally moderate. I would add that sailing within the inner islands is very picturesque, easy and safe with many secure moorings and sailing distances of under 30 nautical miles. The other principal islands, praslin and La Digue, and their various satellite isles are just a few hours pleasant sailing from the principal island of Mahé. Together, Mahé, praslin and La Digue form the Seychelles’ cultural and economic hub and, between them, host the vast majority of the nation’s accommodation and leisure facilities. These range from exclusive five-star resorts and exquisite island hideaways where the optimum By Glynn Burridge Sailing the Seychelles Captain’S Log tHE SEYCHELLES 262 | GSR You will find the Seychelles are pretty much a year-round destination, beautiful, exciting and tranquil. What more could you possibly ask for?
2010 - 2011